Fried Catfish and Hush Puppies with Homemade Ketchup

We made this last weekend and it was fantastic.  The catfish is my mom’s recipe.  I had this dish a lot growing up, and I loved it!  I hadn’t had it in years, but I’m happy to report that it’s still delicious and tasted just like I remember it.  Matt loved it too.  The recipe for the catfish is incredibly simple but tastes wonderful.  I also made hush puppies to go with it, and found that recipe in “Real Cajun” by Donald Link.  And the homemade ketchup came from Bobby Flay’s “Boy Meets Grill”.  Of course you can use store-bought bottled ketchup for this meal, like I always had as a kid, and it will still be great, but I had never made ketchup from scratch before and was curious as to how it would work and taste.  Quite nice, I’d say!  Enjoy!

FRIED CATFISH
Ingredients:
1 pound catfish fillets, cut into chunks
1 cup yellow cornmeal
Salt and black pepper
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Canola oil, for frying

Directions:
Fill a deep fryer with the canola oil and preheat according to manufacturer’s directions. Pat the catfish pieces dry with a paper towel. In a pie plate, combine the cornmeal, salt, pepper, garlic and onion powders, and cayenne. Dredge the catfish pieces in the cornmeal mixture, making sure they are well coated. Set aside until the oil heats up.
Line a plate with paper towels. Fry the catfish pieces until golden brown and the fish is cooked through. This happens fairly quickly, three to four minutes. Work in batches and do not overcrowd the fryer.
Drain on the paper towel lined plate. Eat them dipped in ketchup with your fingers. 🙂

HUSH PUPPIES:
Ingredients:
1/2 small onion, chopped
1 small jalapeno, seeded and chopped fine
1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced
2 tbs fresh flat-leaf parsley, minced
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tbs sugar
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp dried thyme or basil
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
3/4 cup whole milk
1 egg
Canola oil, for frying

Directions:
Combine the onion, jalapeno, scallions and parsley in a food processor; pulse to a rough puree.
Whisk together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, thyme, and cayenne in a bowl.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk and egg. Add the vegetable puree and stir to combine. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until mixed. For the best results, refrigerate at least 30 minutes.
Heat the oil in a deep fryer according to manufacturer’s instructions. Working in batches and not overcrowding, use a spoon to carefully add the batter to the hot oil one tablespoon at a time. Fry, turning once, until golden, 2-3 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate. Let cool for a minute, then enjoy them dipped in ketchup!

HOMEMADE KETCHUP:
Ingredients:
1 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes, cored and quartered
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely diced
1/4 cup cider vinegar
2 tbs brown sugar
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground allspice
3 tbs honey
Salt and black pepper

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 F. In a small bowl, toss the tomatoes with 2 tbs olive oil and place on a baking sheet. Roast until soft, about 10 to 15 minutes (my tomatoes took 20 minutes). Transfer the tomatoes to a food processor and process until smooth. Strain, pressing against the seive with a spoon to extract as much juice as possible.
Heat the remaining olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat; saute the onion and garlic until translucent. Add the tomato puree, vinegar, brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice, and honey. Season with salt and pepper. Continue cooking uncovered for 25 to 30 minutes until thickened. I didn’t like the chunky texture, so I pureed the thickened mixture and that made it perfect. I also added some hot sauce because I thought it was too sweet. Once I made those minor changes, it tasted really, really good! I will still eat the bottled stuff, but this was unique and really tasty. Serve alongside the fried catfish and hush puppies for dipping.

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About jwall915

I love to cook and I love to travel! This blog explores my love of both. I share recipes and restaurant reviews, and I blog the trips I take.
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2 Responses to Fried Catfish and Hush Puppies with Homemade Ketchup

  1. Barbara Wallace says:

    Wow, this sounds so good. Sure makes me hungry for fried fish! My mother used to fix them most Saturday nights! So good. Glad you and Matt liked them!

  2. jwall915 says:

    It was delicious, thank you for the recipe!

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